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Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich from Glen Lochay

Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich from Glen Lochay


Postby andyp » Sat Apr 30, 2011 11:30 pm

Route description: Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich

Munros included on this walk: Beinn Heasgarnich, Creag Mhor (Glen Lochay)

Date walked: 15/04/2011

Time taken: 7 hours

Distance: 25 km

Ascent: 1300m

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My first attempt at a walk report so here goes :D

This was a birthday bonus trip for a few days based in Crianlarich. Fingers had been crossed all week for some half decent weather to make the 800 mile round trip worthwhile (a few weeks ago I had been clinging on for dear life when trying to get from Meall Glas to Sgiath Chuil in raging winds and snow). It seemed to work as the weather gods were kind to me on this trip - 3 fantastic days with clear tops 8) , this why I love Scotland - you never know what it is going to throw at you!

The day started with a pleasant drive through Killin and into Glen Lochay. A new parking area has been set up just before Kenknock so opted to start here (although I noted several cars parked beyond this at the turning for the gated road to Glen Lyon - this would be my return route if I survived the notoriously wet, boggy peat hags to the east of Beinn Heasgarnich). Added a few km but I could do with the exercise!

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Rapid progress was made up the decent track along the Glen (easily cycled if desired), made all the more pleasant when the impressive looking Ben Challum came into view (although summit was in cloud by the time I got the camera out). Looks shapely and steep from here and seems a much better route than that from the A82 side.
SNV32578.JPG
Ben Challum looking fine
Spirits were lifted even higher (if that is possible) when Creag Mhor came into view - a distinct and craggy ridge to look forward to later.
SNV32575.JPG
Creag Mhor comes into view - something to look forward to


I left the track at Batavaime and headed in a fairly direct line up the nose of Sron nan Eun. This got the calves pumping but was less steep than it looks when you pick the correct lines!! Once on this ridge the way becomes more clear after a few twists and turns to pick up a clear path leading all the way to the top and the summit cairn.
SNV32585.JPG
The final rise in the ridge to Creag Mhor
.
SNV32588.JPG
Creag Mhor Summit with Stob nan Clach in background


It was good to be able to see clearly at this point as the direct route off the summit and down to the peaty col below is blocked by steep crags. A westerly route is initially required and then descend by easy north west ridge. There is quite a drop to the col and Beinn Heasgarnich looks a fair distance away at this point (the feet had started to ache a little at this point).
SNV32594.JPG
The big fall and rise to Beinn Heasgarnich from Creag Mhor
.

Despite my concerns the descent to the col was straightforward and quick progress was made up the long bumpy slopes to Beinn Heasgarnich. At this point looking back excellent views were to be had of Creag Mhor.
SNV32598.JPG
View back to Creag Mhor


Eventually the summit of Beinn Heasgarnich came into view and the aching feet were temporarily forgotten. Again extensive views all around. On days like this it seems a shame to have to go back down! The route off the east side of this hill thankfully failed to live up to the descriptions I had read prior to the trip (wet, boggy, peat hags) - it was relatively dry and easy but then I had no problems with the visibility (I'd probably have a different perspective in the clag following heavy rain). It is a long walk back to the car even after reaching the Glen Lyon track but at least it is all down hill.
SNV32601.JPG
Beinn Heasgarnich summit cairn comes into view


I've included a photo of Creag Mhor and Ben Challum from across the Glen taken 2 days later whilst climbing Sgiath Chuil.
SNV32620.JPG
Ben Challum and Creag Mhor from ascent of Sgiath Chuil
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andyp
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Re: Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich from Glen Lochay

Postby skuk007 » Sun May 01, 2011 8:18 pm

Nice first report Andy, good detail in there for us who have yet to do this one.
Glad you got better weather than your Meall Glas/Sgiath Chuil walk.
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skuk007
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Re: Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich from Glen Lochay

Postby andyp » Sun May 01, 2011 9:07 pm

Thanks for the comments skuk - as you'll know with being such a long way from these hills, any help in the planning is always welcomed.

I am just browsing routes for a possible trip over Spring Bank holiday - so many good walk reports to read though that I keep getting side-tracked (virtual walking!!)
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andyp
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Re: Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich from Glen Lochay

Postby skuk007 » Sun May 01, 2011 9:26 pm

Yep, planning a week at the end of June. In fact I've been planning this trip since I was driving back South from my last trip. :lol:

800 mile round trip for you on this one! I guess you are south of Birmingham too.
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skuk007
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Re: Creag Mhor and Beinn Heasgarnich from Glen Lochay

Postby andyp » Thu May 05, 2011 7:19 pm

skuk007 wrote:800 mile round trip for you on this one! I guess you are south of Birmingham too.


Not quite - south Notts. My car knows the way up by itself these days but it is still quite a journey. I know that age is catching up with me though when the journey up causes more pain in my knees and back than climbing hills does :lol:

Didn't realise at the time of writing this report just how dry it has been up north. Seen lots of footage of fires (including dramatic Liathach on fire pics in this forum); its no wonder the route off Heasgarnich was not as normal!
Torn now between wanting rain (to dampen everthing down) and staying dry so that I can tackle some of the wetter routes over the Spring Bank holiday maybe!
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andyp
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